halfords

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subandean
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halfords

Postby subandean » 7 Aug 2011, 5:49pm

I know it is a dirty word amongst many but on Saturday we thought we would visit the dreaded Halfords to look at Boardman bikes and see what the reviews were referring to. On arrival on the business park we realised there were no cycle racks so before the security guard could stop me I locked our bikes to the large container of screen wash.
We found the hybrid bikes but with only two staff on a Saturday afternoon we realised quality advice was going to be difficult. After patiently waiting we discussed requirements and requested advice on size with a friendly salesperson. On getting the selected bike off the rack it turned out to be large not medium. We then learned there were no mediums in any of the local shops but we could search online and Halfords would "DHL" it. We were then told they did not know when any more will be coming in.
The sales person tried to help but was hampered by poor stock and minimal information. I had read the bad reviews online but thought we would give it a try. Sadly our worst fears were confirmed over Halfords. Why did Boardman Bikes opt to sign a sole supply contract with Halfords?

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hubgearfreak
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Re: halfords

Postby hubgearfreak » 7 Aug 2011, 8:13pm

subandean wrote:Why did Boardman Bikes opt to sign a sole supply contract with Halfords?


i suspect that halfords got a far eastern factory to produce an exclusive range, then bought a celebrity to put his name to it

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al_yrpal
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Re: halfords

Postby al_yrpal » 7 Aug 2011, 11:02pm

Some great own brand bikes in the Halfords Carerra and Boardman ranges at great prices. Your size wasn't in stock and they couldn't find out on a Saturday afternoon when it would be! Did you ask them to give you a ring on Monday? Probably been flying off the shelves after the massive Boardman ad campaign on ITV4's TDF coverage. Condemning Halfords just for that is rather excessive. The reason these bikes are such great value is solely because they buy them from Asia in large quantities built to Halfords spec. Plastering them with Chris Boardman's name costs you more but sells more bikes.

Al
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Re: halfords

Postby LANDSURFER74 » 7 Aug 2011, 11:19pm

I noticed the bikes he rode on the TDF highlights programme where without branding ...???

Edwards
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Re: halfords

Postby Edwards » 8 Aug 2011, 6:52am

subandean wrote:The sales person tried to help but was hampered by poor stock and minimal information. I had read the bad reviews online but thought we would give it a try


Did they ask for a deposit before getting the size bike in as a lot of others bike shops do? The problems you highlight are no different to all the other large bike shops and some of the independents as well. Except were the staff rude or condescending?

LANDSURFER74 wrote:I noticed the bikes he rode on the TDF highlights programme where without branding ...???


I also noticed that the Boardman bikes he was using had the logo's taped over. The forks and other distinctive features stood out though.
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Colin63
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Re: halfords

Postby Colin63 » 8 Aug 2011, 7:23am

Boardman Bikes have nothing to do with Halfords. They're distributed by Halfords because Boardman made the decision that to get market penetration he needed to sell through a big chain as they have far more customers than small cycle shops and, I suspect, that many are tied in to established brands. It's merely a distribution deal and I get the impression that Halfords are not playing their part by providing inadequate training to their staff. From his tweets I get the impression that Chris Boardman is both very aware of their shortfalls and not very happy about it. His bikes have a reputation for being beautifully designed and equipped, and I won't be surprised if once this contract is over that Halfords will not be selling his bikes any longer.

The Mechanic
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Re: halfords

Postby The Mechanic » 8 Aug 2011, 9:08am

Wiggle sell Boardman bikes everywhere except the UK. Presumably that is something to do with the Halfords contract. Check out the Boardman Bikes website for more details. They have full specs of all the bikes there, which is a lot more than they sell at Halfords.

www.boardmanbikes.com
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subandean
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Re: halfords

Postby subandean » 8 Aug 2011, 1:09pm

I did not condemn the staff in my post just reported the experience of visiting a Halford super store. There were only two staff and they were polite and apologetic. My point is that Halfords have the sole UK distribution rights but do not carry stock and from my conversation were not expecting any in the near future.
There are no alternate UK suppliers. It's a pty Wiggle don't have the UK distribution rights.
The bikes on display looked great - frames had good attention to detail and the components were good quality.
Halfords (in our area) just don't have any to sell!

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hubgearfreak
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Re: halfords

Postby hubgearfreak » 11 Aug 2011, 4:38pm

Colin63 wrote:Boardman Bikes have nothing to do with Halfords. . . . . From his tweets I get the impression that Chris Boardman is both very aware of their shortfalls and not very happy about it.


what did he expect? :roll:

ogreville
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Re: halfords

Postby ogreville » 11 Aug 2011, 10:19pm

As with most large retailers, stock is ordered based on stock level nation wide. If halfords have, for example, fifty medium male Boardman bikes then they can't simply place an order with the manufacturer for a small top-up of two hundred bikes. They would make a loss. These orders must be in the thousands, with a range of sizes.

If you like the look of the bike then order it on the halfords website.

This is not only a problem for large chains. My indi LBSs normally only stock one size of each bike in store. There are really snooty about sizing. I test rode a touring bike in my LBS. I'm quite short (5"9), and the sales assistant told me that the tourer with an XL frame would be fine for me as I'd "get used to" a stretched riding position. He just wanted to sell the bike he had in-store.

You also have to remember that Halfords will probably be paying their staff minimum wage. They will probably be more helpful than someone working in an independent bike shop. :D

GrahamNR17
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Re: halfords

Postby GrahamNR17 » 12 Aug 2011, 10:25am

subandean wrote:I did not condemn the staff in my post just reported the experience of visiting a Halford super store.

And that's what this thread is for, reporting your experience. You did your review well, and, in my opinion, entirely non-judgementally.

Flinders
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Re: halfords

Postby Flinders » 14 Aug 2011, 7:17pm

ogreville wrote:
This is not only a problem for large chains. My indi LBSs normally only stock one size of each bike in store. There are really snooty about sizing. I test rode a touring bike in my LBS. I'm quite short (5"9), and the sales assistant told me that the tourer with an XL frame would be fine for me as I'd "get used to" a stretched riding position. He just wanted to sell the bike he had in-store. :D


As an even smaller 5' person, I had a poor experience at a large London store (which was so long ago it would be unfair of me to name them) who tried to get me to buy a bike patently far too big for me, and a Ladies' frame as well, which I'd already said I didn't want. Basically, there was no off-the-peg frame that would fit, and they didn't even suggest a bespoke frame as they should have done. They just advised me to get one they had in stock that had a saddle well above my waist height and said I'd get used to hopping off the saddle at the lights. :shock: (They also knew I was going to have to actually learn to ride a bike on the thing as I'd never ridden one before- thank goodness I took advice from a keen cyclist.) Other smaller shops in London and here in Staffs have been completely on the ball and wouldn't have sold me a bike the wrong size even if I'd wanted one, even thought that even meant a hand-built frame in one case, and special orders in the others.

I think it isn't a large/small shop problem, it's just whether they give a darn about their customers' safety or not.

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Mick F
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Re: halfords

Postby Mick F » 14 Aug 2011, 7:43pm

Colin63 wrote:Boardman Bikes ................. His bikes have a reputation for being beautifully designed and equipped ................................

What is the spec?
Is it worth it?

From what I can see, they are only Shimano and Sram.
Mick F. Cornwall

Edwards
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Re: halfords

Postby Edwards » 17 Aug 2011, 5:22pm

I hope nobody has taken me wrong. I was not knocking Halfords but trying to point out that they have the same problems as other shops. Also they are better than some in that they do not want you to put a large deposit down before they will get one in for you to try.
Personally I think that Halfords sell some decent bikes at good prices and the staff are not inclined to fob you off with something you do not want.
Keith Edwards
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ukdodger
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Halfords customer service

Postby ukdodger » 12 Oct 2011, 11:54am

Has anyone else had a problem returning duff goods to Halfords? I bought two tyres from their Exeter branch both of which were imperfectly round (Taiwan made). On a reasonably flat road they have a regular bump-bump-bump that varies with speed. It is not the rim. I took the tyre off to check and put a Schwalbe tyre in it's place - perfect. The problem is the imperfection only shows at about 20mph and isnt visible to the eye. Halfords refused to change or refund on them unless I first take the bike with the tyre(s) fitted to a Halfords branch and ask the cycle bloke to find a flat road to ride on at 20mph in order to prove it and then they would consider a refund. Presumably after such a demonstration which somehow I dont think the branch would be happy with I would then have to carry the bike home because I would want a refund not more of the same tyre. Halfords policy so their customer service people tell me is that a burden of proof rests with the customer for returned faulty goods.

I posted this as a new thread!!!!
Last edited by ukdodger on 17 Oct 2011, 10:32pm, edited 1 time in total.